El Banco Mercantil de Veracruz

The interest of the Veracruz elite in the banking system was manifested by several of them acquiring shares in the Banco Nacional Mexicano in 1882. After the merger of the Banco Nacional de México in 1884 it maintained a branch and various agencies in the state, competing at this time with just the Banco de Londres y México.

As a result of the passing of the Ley General de Instituciones de Crédito on 14 October 1897 Zaldo Hermanos y Compañía, Palomo y Compañía and José Breier, all members of the Veracruz elite, asked for authorisation to establish a bank of issue in Veracruz, and this was granted on 18 October.

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The bank opened on 1 March 1898La Patria, México, 3 March 1898in a purpose-built building on calle Cinco de Mayo and calle ZamoraSemana Mercantil, 10 January 1898.

The first board was composed of Anselmo Román Zaldo as president; Antonio Palomo as vicepresident with Primer Vocal Secretario Jacinto Villacieros Benito; Segundo Vocal Propietario Esteban J. Pons; Primer Vocal Suplente Antonio G. Presno; Segundo Vocal Suplente E. Speckter; Tercer Vocal Suplente C. Pardo y Sáinz; Cuarto Vocal Suplente Laureano Alvarez; Comisionario Propietario Saturnino Ulibarri and Comisionario Suplente Manuel Gómez O.

The first meeting of shareholders of the bank was held on 15 December 1897, and they asked that a special note be made for the bank’s promoter, Anselmo R, Zaldo, and that his portrait be hung in the bankLa Época, Veracruz, Tomo II, Número 314, 19 December 1897.

The branch in Xalapa was opened in April 1904 under the management of Manuel NegreteEl Correo Español, 4 April 1904. Other branches were opened in Orizaba (1904), San Andrés Tuxtla (1906) and Córdoba (1908) and agencies in Coatzacoalcos (1906), Puerto México (1906) and Tuxpan (1910).

The bank originally suffered from the fact that use of its notes, unlike those of the Banco Nacional de México, were limited to within the state but in 1904 the bank signed an agreement with the government of Veracruz by which it provided banking functions to the government which in turn gave it privileges and accepted its note in all its offices.

American Bank Note Company print runs

The American Bank Note Company produced the following notes. The company engraved a view of Veracruz (C 651) for all the backs and a vignette of a group of Mexican cavalry (C 662),

Veracruz 5 specimen

Veracruz 5 specimen reverse

Veracruz 10 1 specimen

Veracruz 10 1 specimen reverse

Veracruz 20 IA 21673

Veracruz 50 N7 9010

Veracruz 100 A3 8194

Veracruz 500 specimen

Veracruz 1000 I4 097

Date Value Number Series from to
November 1897 $5 80,000   1 80000
$10 40,000   1 40000
$20 20,000   1 20000
$50
12,000   1 12000
$100
6,000   1 6000
$500 800   1 800
$1000 200   1 200

 

Date Value Number Series from to
November 1898 $5 54,000   80001 134000
$10 27,000   40001 67000
$20 13,000   20001 33000
$50
8,000   12001 20000
$100
4,000   6001 10000
$500 500   801 1300
$1000 150   151 350

 

In February 1903 the ABNC produced a new $10 note, engraving a portrait of Miguel Lerdo de Tejada (C 261).

Veracruz 10 2 specimen

Veracruz 10 2 specimen reverse

Date Value Number Series from to
February 1903 $10 80,000   1 80000

 

Date Value Number Series from to
February 1904 $5 60,000   134001 194000

 

Date Value Number Series from to
July 1905 $5 76,000   194000 270000
$10 50,000   80001 130000

 

Date Value Number Series from to
January 1914
 
$5 200,000   270000 470000
$10 100,000   130001 230000
$100 10,000   10001 20000
$1000 500   351 850